Spicy tuna fish cakes

These fish cakes are wonderfully aromatic, with a gentle heat from the chilli powder, fresh from the perfume of coriander and with a hint of lemon. Serve them for a lighter lunch with the tomato and coriander chutney (more of a salsa really) or with the sweet and spicy tomato chutney (this can be eaten fresh but tastes even better after a few days in the jar )

Makes: around 10 fish cakes depending on size
Serves: 4 or 5
2 x 120g no drain tins of tuna in oil olive
4 medium potatoes (peeled and halved)
1 tbsp vegetable oil
half a red onion finely diced
2 cloves of garlic crushed (or pulverised in a pestle and mortar)
5cm piece of ginger finely grated
bunch of coriander
2 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp mild curry powder
half a chopped chilli or teaspoon chilli powder (this is to your taste depending on how spicy or not you like it)
juice of half a lemon
salt and pepper
breadcrumbs (we like the finely milled Italian ones)
2 eggs (beaten)
Oil for frying

To serve: tomato and coriander chutney or sweet & spicy cherry tomato chutney


Cook the potato in boiling salted water until tender, drain and mash well but do not add any butter. If you have a potato ricer use this as this gives the best texture to a mashed potato. Keep to one side to cool down

Heat the oil in a frying pan and cook the onion a little (you want to retain the crunch of the red onion. Add the ginger and garlic and cook gently until you can smell the spices. Chop the stems of the coriander finely and add to the pan, retaining the leaves for later. Add the cumin,coriander, garam marsala, curry powder and chilli powder or fresh chilli. Cook gently until you can really smell the aroma from the pan. Turn the heat down to very low and add both tins of tuna. Stir well to combine the mixture. Finely chop the coriander leaves and add to the mixture along with the mashed potato. Slowly add the lemon juice. Take of the heat and taste. The mixture should be spicy, sharp with lemon and fresh from the coriander. Season to taste.

Take golf ball size portions of the mixture and squeeze into round patties. Keep going until you have used up all the mixture. You should get around 10 but if you want only 8 just make them bigger. Make sure they are not too thick otherwise its difficult to crisp up the sides when cooking. You could take walnut size pieces and make tiny canapé size fishcakes. These can now be covered with clingfilm and left in the fridge until needed.

When you are ready to cook. Remove the fishcakes from the fridge. Place the beaten egg in a container and the breadcrumbs on a large plate. Roll each fishcake first in the beaten egg then roll in the breadcrumbs. Make sure that they are well coated in egg other wise the breadcrumbs won’t stick. Press the breadcrumbs in well to get a good coating.

Heat enough oil to well cover the base of a large frying pan. Once the oil is hot, cook the fishcakes in oil until golden brown (around 2 to 3 minutes), then flip over and cook the other side.Once crispy and brown on both sides, lift out onto kitchen paper to remove any excess oil then serve with your choice of side dish or chutney.




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